02 February 2013

Getting by in Rwanda

I can't get enough of these vignettes on the lives of the poor. 
Suprian Ndorimana, 12, lives in the outskirts of Kigali. 
I wake up at 4 a.m. and think about what to bring to the market for my customers. My mother goes to the garden every evening and gathers what I carry to the market. 
At around 7 a.m. I arrive at the market and business starts. 
I do not go to school because of the kind of work I am doing. It helps us in the family a great deal. Since I am the first born, I am basically the one in charge of my siblings. 
Even my mother encourages me to keep running this business as opposed to going to school when my young sister is just beginning to go to school. 
This is the business I have been doing for the last two years. Our family has gone from worse to better and my mother is very happy with me. 
I finish preparing the following day’s produce at around 7 p.m. and take supper around 8 p.m., after which I go to bed.
A day in the life of a child market vendor, New Times

Dismus Nsengiyera, 20, is a street vendor, selling items like sweets in Remera, Gasabo district 
I always wake up at 7a.m and take a shower. Ordinarily, since I am not a rich person, I skip breakfast. The money I would have used for breakfast, I save it and add it on what I have for lunch. 
My job is so complicated and it requires some patience. Sometimes, I earn nothing and go back home empty handed. 
At around 10am, I keep on the lookout because police can fix you if you are not careful. Sometimes, I keep running away from the police. We are not allowed to sell in the middle of the streets. 
Once in while, the police confiscates our things. This means, you have to go back home without a single coin. I use Frw3000 every day to buy what I will sell in the day but some times, I end of gaining nothing. 
Before 2pm, my lunch, is over and I start working till 6pm and I retire back home. When I reach home, I head straight to bed. I rarely have supper.
A day in the life of a street hawker, New Times

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